The thing with our house is that everything is balanced. Any flat surface gets laden with pieces of paper and various trinkets and it drives my Dad mad. He says that every flat surface is a dumping ground for rubbish... obviously not in quite a friendly dialogue. I must say, he's right. The cupboards are no different. To get a middle-sized pan means that at least three other things - a bag of crisps, a colander and some tin foil - end up on the kitchen floor and, of course, I can hear someone cursing (namely, my Dad) that everything is bleeding balanced in this house. So whilst my parents are on holiday I thought I'd try and tackle the main problem in our kitchen... the store cupboard. What an Everest of a challenge.
As you can see, my Dad is right. It's like a giant game of Jenga in there but far more difficult to avoid the whole thing toppling over. The foundations of a brilliant cupboard were there - little plastic tubs (recycled from ice cream over the years) to stand things up in and provide a little organisation - but nothing was being used to its maximum potential. And so the clear out began...
Don't get me wrong, our cupboard was messy but our house is always clean so it surprised me just how much muck comes off the bottom of tin cans and stray dried peas. Elbow Grease is a kitchen cleaner you can pick up from the supermarket for around £1 and it is amazing at tackling dried on dirt. A few sprays left for a few seconds made our cupboard spotless.
Now came the task of attempting to fit ALL of that food back into the same sized space whilst trying to make sure that everything can be seen from the front, everything is the right way round, in size order and grouped with similar products. What I discovered is that we have a lot of beans. And peas. And tuna! My goodness, tuna. There is less in the sea than in brine in our cupboard. More than ten tins now stand with pride, grouped together and facing forward, on the bottom shelf. Everything else is grouped similarly and the storage boxes are used to their full potential. Are you ready for the big reveal? I think so. (I know, I know, it's a kitchen cupboard but it looks so pretty now!) Drum roll please.
TA-DA! Look at it! I'm so proud. Small things, I know. The top left is a 'savoury spices' box which now holds all the seasoning and stock cubes... and by Jove we have a lot of stock cubes. The top right is a 'savoury rice' box which holds all the 'just add water' pasta dishes. On the bottom left, behind the gravy granules, there's a 'dessert' box which houses the custard powders, Angel Delight and sachets of jelly. The difference utilising three plastic boxes makes is incredible. I urge you all to tackle that problem cupboard with the help of a couple of ice cream tubs. And hey - do you need me to give you another reason to eat a massive tub of ice cream? No? Thought not. :)
PS. I sent my Dad a picture message. His response? 'Is that actually our cupboard?' Yes Pappa, look, nothing's balanced!